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  1. Blog
  2. Pregnancy
  3. May 19, 2023

Your Guide to Fertility Benefits: The Coverage You Need & What to Expect from Employers

The number of U.S. companies that provide fertility benefits is up 30 percent since 2020

Women who used fertility benefits to get pregnant
Photo courtesy of SHVETS production

An increasing number of employers are offering fertility benefits. According to a study by the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, the number of U.S. companies that provide fertility benefits is up 30 percent since 2020; clearly, more companies are enhancing their benefits beyond paid leave and retirement plans. Still, every employer’s benefits package looks different and may include any combination of these commonly offered benefits: 

  • Paid leave

  • Fee reimbursement

  • Counseling resources for individuals struggling with fertility issues

  • Financial support to cover the costs associated with fertility and family planning procedures

  • Support and guidance through an advocate or patient care representative 

The companies that offer fertility benefits vary, but they typically have a few things in common: 

  • Size and sector: They are considered mid-sized or large, have at least 500 employees, and are in the private sector.

  • Industry: They are in industries like tech (including fintech and eCommerce), business, finance, and professional services (such as consulting and wealth management).

  • Values: They possess progressive values and focus on the evolving needs of their employees.

  • Goals: They are concerned about employee retention—Carrot’s Fertility at Work Report showed that 88 percent of employees would switch jobs to gain fertility benefits, an important finding for companies whose goal is to retain talent.  

Understanding fertility benefits: 7 types often offered by employers 

Diagnostic testing (including imaging and lab tests)

If you’ve been trying to conceive for at least one year with no luck, you may want to figure out whether a fertility issue is the culprit. To determine that, most doctors will use diagnostic testing, which can include pelvic ultrasounds, hormone tests, or a hysterosalpingogram, otherwise known as HSG. HSG is a procedure that can determine whether your fallopian tubes are blocked. According to the Advanced Fertility Center of Chicago, these services can cost up to $400 for a visit with a fertility specialist and up to $3,000 for HSG.

Employers do not usually allocate coverage for each specific test, so diagnostic testing may fall under “infertility services.” This also means that your coverage may be rolled into a maximum benefit, which is one amount that you will need to use to cover the services you need. For example, DoorDash covers up to $20,000 for egg freezing, adoption and surrogacy fees, and infertility services. If you have this coverage, you may be able to use a portion of that $20,000 to pay for your diagnostic testing, but you may have to cover any additional services you need out-of-pocket once that $20,000 benefit is exhausted. The best coverage for diagnostic testing specifically will at least range between $5,000 to $10,000 in case you need more extensive testing, such as laparoscopy or ovarian reserve testing.

Surgical fertility restoration

Laparoscopy and hysteroscopy procedures are not just for diagnosing fertility issues; they can also be used to help repair problems, such as polyps, fibroids, or adhesions. Adobe is an example of a company that specifically mentions covering a surgical procedure (“ovum microsurgery”) in their benefits plan, but you may find that employers mention “fertility treatment” or “fertility assistance,” without specifically mentioning fertility surgery. In this case, it is important to ask what specific coverage the employer provides, and whether that includes surgical procedures you might need.

According to, out-of-pocket costs for these procedures can vary widely, potentially costing thousands of dollars. Ideally, your employer will cover more than half that cost, along with the fees for any prescription medications needed before or after the surgery. 

In-vitro fertilization (IVF)

During IVF, a woman’s eggs are collected and fertilized by sperm in a lab. According to Verywell Family, the procedure can cost between $12,000 and $15,000 per cycle; many couples need three to six cycles to successfully conceive a baby. Like many other fertility treatments, IVF is rarely covered by insurance, so getting maximum coverage through your employer is ideal. The average employer coverage for IVF is about $20,000, but more comprehensive employer coverage is unlimited, as long as you remain an employee at the company. 

Intrauterine insemination (IUI)

Intrauterine insemination—another name for artificial insemination—allows a physician to put sperm directly inside of your uterus, which increases the chance that your egg will be fertilized. According to Planned Parenthood, IUI can cost up to $1,000 out of pocket; ExtendFertility reports that the cost of IUI medications can hike the price to $3,000 or more.  

Average coverage for IUI may be rolled into a maximum benefit of $20,000 and you will need at least $5,000 to cover one round of the IUI procedure and medications; $10,000 would be ideal coverage if you need multiple rounds of IUI, like most couples. 

Egg freezing

The process of freezing your eggs allows you to save them until you are ready to have children—even if that’s years down the line. Most companies offer around $20,000 in egg-freezing coverage, but with the average cost of egg-freezing totaling up to $40,000 (about $20,000 for the average two cycles), more generous coverage will be $50,000 or unlimited, which you might see at companies like Bain & Company

Fertility drugs

In some cases, fertility issues stem from a lack of ovulation. Several drugs, such as clomid, metformin, and various types of hormones can help to stimulate ovulation, thus increasing the chance of conception. Some employers offer coverage for a wide range of fertility drugs while other employers only cover IVF-related medications. The average coverage for fertility drugs is $10,000, but the best coverage will look like that of News Corp, which offers $30,000 in a lifetime benefit for infertility prescription drug services, or unlimited coverage like what Chanel offers. 

Surrogacy and adoption

Surrogacy is a process in which your egg and your partner or donor’s sperm are implanted into another woman who agrees to carry your baby for you. Investopedia reports the average total cost of surrogacy in the U.S. is about $100,000.

Adoption involves legally taking custody of a child you did not help to conceive. According to the Child Welfare Information Gateway, adoption costs up to $60,000 if you complete the process through an adoption agency. 

The average coverage for adoption and surrogacy is between $10,000 and $20,000—much like other fertility benefits, adoption and surrogacy may be grouped under a maximum benefit like what DoorDash offers. They will reimburse eligible employees up to $20,000 worth of fees for egg freezing, infertility services, and adoption and surrogacy. This means that if you decided to freeze your eggs, for instance, then later decided to use those eggs with a surrogate, you would likely have to pay for whatever the $20,000 doesn’t cover out-of-pocket. 

More generous coverage looks like the assistance that Citizens Bank offers: more than $24,000 of costs are covered through the company’s Adoption Assistance program for both domestic and international adoptions. This benefit would provide more flexibility because you would not have to use the money to cover several different services. 

How to ask an employer about fertility benefits

As a current employee

If you are a current employee who has insurance through your employer, start by contacting your HR department. The benefits team can provide an overview of fertility benefits. From there, they can connect you with a benefits broker, which is a professional who can provide specific guidance in accessing your benefits products and services.

Some companies don’t have benefits brokers, so your HR department may advise you to go directly to the insurance company to inquire about specific fertility benefits. The insurance company will confirm what treatments and services are covered through your plan. Be sure to note any insurance deductible you may have, which is the amount you must pay for any medical services before your insurance company starts to cover them. 

If your employer does not offer fertility benefits and you’d like to change that, you can start by gathering information about the advantages to employees and employers, rounding up support from other employees, and appealing to internal employee resource groups. Although you cannot achieve an overnight change, taking these steps can motivate your employer to reconsider offering fertility benefits. 

For examples of how companies have changed policies, read this

As a prospective employee

When researching a company to prepare for an interview, check their benefits website to get an idea of what they offer. In some industries, a brief meeting with HR is a part of your interview process. If it is not, you must be proactive in asking about fertility benefits. In fact, you should be asking about all aspects of your benefits, including the ones you don’t need right now, but may want to use later. 

On average, job candidates go through two to three rounds of interviews before receiving an offer. When you have the chance to ask questions about benefits (likely during the second or third interview), you can ask to speak with someone in HR about specific coverage. In most cases, when an employer wants you on their team, they will do whatever is necessary to get you to accept the job—this includes connecting you with HR so that you can get your benefits questions answered. They also might be willing to negotiate benefits. For guidance on how to do that effectively, read our benefits negotiation guide.

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